Friday, February 12, 2021

MT: Permitless (Constitutional) Carry and Gun Law Reform HB 102 Passes Senate goes to Governor


HB102  Passed the Montana Senate on 3 February, 2021, with a strong majority of 29 to 21 votes. The bill is scheduled for debate and a vote in the House on 4 February, 2021. This correspondent expects the bill to pass the House with the Senate amendments, and send the HB102 to Governor Greg Gianforte. Governor Gianforte has been reported as saying he wishes for this bill to be the first bill he signs as Montana's new Governor.  The bill was extensively considered in a previous article.

Reform bills with similar provisions have been repeatedly vetoed by Democrat governors in Montana for 15 years. 

The amendments added to HB102 in the senate are expected to be acceptable to the House.  As this correspondent reads the bill they are:

- The effective date for changes to University policies has been changed from on passage  to 1 June, 2021.

- A gun free zone has been added to the university exceptions. It is:

(i)the possession of a firearm at an athletic or entertainment event open to the public with controlled access and armed security on site.

- The same training required for Montana concealed carry permits may be required to carry on campus, either openly or concealed, by university regulation. People must be allowed to carry if they meet the requirements.

- The prohibition on carry in places which serve alcohol has been removed.

Here are the various ways the training requirement may be met, under Montana law. From Statute 45-8-321(3) :  

(3) An applicant for a permit under this section must, as a condition to issuance of the permit, be required by the sheriff to demonstrate familiarity with a firearm by:

(a) completion of a hunter education or safety course approved or conducted by the department of fish, wildlife, and parks or a similar agency of another state;

(b) completion of a firearms safety or training course approved or conducted by the department of fish, wildlife, and parks, a similar agency of another state, a national firearms association, a law enforcement agency, an institution of higher education, or an organization that uses instructors certified by a national firearms association;

(c) completion of a law enforcement firearms safety or training course offered to or required of public or private law enforcement personnel and conducted or approved by a law enforcement agency;

(d) possession of a license from another state to carry a firearm, concealed or otherwise, that is granted by that state upon completion of a course described in subsections (3)(a) through (3)(c); or

(e) evidence that the applicant, during military service, was found to be qualified to operate firearms, including handguns.

(4) A photocopy of a certificate of completion of a course described in subsection (3), an affidavit from the entity or instructor that conducted the course attesting to completion of the course, or a copy of any other document that attests to completion of the course and can be verified through contact with the entity or instructor that conducted the course creates a presumption that the applicant has completed a course described in subsection (3).

(5) If the sheriff and applicant agree, the requirement in subsection (3) of demonstrating familiarity with a firearm may be satisfied by the applicant's passing, to the satisfaction of the sheriff or of any person or entity to which the sheriff delegates authority to give the test, a physical test in which the applicant demonstrates the applicant's familiarity with a firearm.

As listed, there are several available avenues for those who wish to carry on campus to meet the training requirements, including demonstrating to a sheriff their familiarity with a firearm, if the sheriff agrees.

The bill includes numerous other reforms which Second Amendment supporters have been attempting to pass in Montana for years.

Update: HB102 has been sent to Governor Gianforte for his signature. 

©2021 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

There have always been people with mental problems, malcontents and simply deranged jerks. The framers knew this when they wrote the second amendment. The framers knew that Government could never be trusted to carry out its mission as required. malcontents seem to get elected more often than not. the bill of rights has no written requirement for any right to require a permit for any of the rights that are grunted. Malcontents cant seem to understand the meaning of GUARANTEED. Democraps (the malcontents)would prefer the bill of rights never existed. They have been trying to destroy the constitution for decades. they actually believe the government should control everything. That is the very reason we have a constitution , so the people are in control of the government and we can hold them accountable and exercise all of the rights we are guaranteed. A permit is government trying to control those they disapprove of. No one will ever tell me I do not have the right of self defense. cops are too heavy to carry so the framers solution was to make self defense a personal responsibility. So they made it possible with the second amendment for every one to carry when cops are not handy. The choice of weapon is a personal choice there is no written requirement to be trained with the weapon of your choice. Intelligent people can and should chose a weapon they can learn to use well. Don't ever forget we will always have the idiots. My first wife I taught to shoot a pistol for self protection and she had never touched a firearm. First time out for live fire she kept a soda can in the air for six shots. tell her she needs to pay for training and a permit.